Building blocks for raising healthy children - - The News for South Mississippi

Building blocks for raising healthy children

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By Meggan Gray – bio | email

BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - If you're a parent who's always looking for ways to help your children learn, you may want to consider the Search Institute's checklist for Developmental Assets. Following these guidelines, especially in those critical first years, can make a huge impact in your toddler's life.  They encourage children to grow up as healthy, caring, and responsible individuals.

Mental Health Coordinator for the Mississippi Gulf Coast Children's Health Project, Debby Traughber, says statistically, children who've been exposed to at least 31 of the 40 suggested assets tend to thrive and be more successful later in life.

The list for parents of children age three to five includes everything from family support, community involvement and religion to early literacy, interpersonal skills, and self esteem.  It encourages parents to include children in family conversations, to keep a routine bedtime, read together every day, and allow plenty of room for creativity.

The Search Institute was created in 1990.  Its framework of Developmental Assets has become the most widely used approach to positive youth development in the U.S.  You can learn more and sign up for other parenting tools by visiting Search Institute.

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